272 " LADIES FIRST.
Just in the niek of time as if to prove their in¬
nocence, several messenger boys entered Bana¬
tyne's office and cried above the confused mutter-
"Mr. Roy Banatyne?"
" Here!" sounded Banatyne's voice from the
midst of his surrounding complainants. The boys
pushed through the crowd to Banatyne, each one
handing him a sealed envelope :
"Ah! Here are some reports from the brokers
and I'll give you all the benefit of Avhat they have
to say," and Banatyne read the first report
aloud, more to relioA'e himself from an uncom¬
fortably cram.ped position than to clear his record
of an accusation,
" Bought for your account 1,700 shares 'Last
Hope' at $10.00."
" That must have been at the opening and before
the break," laughed Banatyne, and his smile A\'as
reflected in some of the hitherto froAvning faces.
"xVh ! here's another," he continued, as a second
boy handed him an insignificant looking paper
Avhich read :
" Bought for your account 3,200 shares ' Last
Hope ' at $8.00." " WhoAv!" said Banatyne, " that's
a pretty big drop;" but he smiled his careless
" Here's another, ' 2,850 shares at $5,' and—
Great Scott! here's the clincher, ' 3,200 shares
from five dollars doAvn to three.' "
" That is heU a mile," and Banatyne would have
indulged in other energetic Anglo-Saxon phrases
but the reports didn't give him time, for they